UK
16/11/2013 02:44 GMT | Updated 23/01/2014 18:56 GMT

Morning Headlines: David Cameron, Typhoon Aid And A Record Breaking Children In Need

PATIENT NEGLECT TO BE MADE A CRIME

The wilful neglect of patients is to be made a criminal offence under NHS reforms being introduced in the wake of the Mid Staffs and other care scandals.

David Cameron said health workers who mistreated and abused patients would face "the full force of the law" in a package of measures to be unveiled next week.

The offence will be modelled on laws against the wilful neglect of adults under the Mental Capacity Act, punishable by fines or up to five years in prison.

PM PLEDGES £30M MORE IN TYPHOON AID

David Cameron has announced the Government is to give an extra £30 million in aid to help the Philippines cope with the devastation caused by Typhoon Haiyan.

It brings the total amount of aid donated by the Government to £50 million.

Speaking at a press conference in Sri Lanka ahead of the Commonwealth summit, he said the scale of the disaster is "becoming clearer every day".

CAMERON SHRUGS OFF MURALI COMMENTS

David Cameron insisted he had given a "fair reflection" of the need for improved human rights in Sri Lanka after cricketer Muttiah Muralitharan suggested he had been given a false picture of his country.

The spin bowling great suggested the Prime Minister had been "misled" about the latest situation in the war-scarred north of the island.

Mr Cameron is pressing the Sri Lankan regime to do more to improve conditions for the minority Tamil population still suffering the effects of a 26-year civil war which ended in 2009.

CHARLES TO VISIT TEA PLANTATION

The Prince of Wales's tour of the Indian sub-continent draws to a close today with visits to a tea plantation, a major Buddhist shrine and a botanical garden.

Charles and Camilla began their trip in India where they spent nine days travelling the length and breadth of the country visiting Dehradun, New Delhi, Mumbai and Kochi.

The prince yesterday opened the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in Sri Lanka which has been overshadowed by accusations that the host nation's regime committed human rights abuses when it ended a civil war.

DEMO BACKING GREENPEACE ACTIVISTS

Protesters will gather at more than 70 Shell petrol stations across the UK today as part of Greenpeace's campaign to free a group of activists arrested in Russia.

Two journalists and 28 Greenpeace activists are being held in St Petersburg charged with piracy and hooliganism after Russian authorities seized the Arctic Sunrise vessel in September.

Demonstrators will be asking members of the public to show their support for the 30 - six of whom are UK nationals - by sending a message to the Russian Embassy in London asking for their release, Greenpeace said.

GPS' FUND SHARE 'LOWEST ON RECORD'

Patient care is being put at risk due to a slump in the amount of NHS budget spent on general practice - now the lowest on record, a GPs' group has warned.

In 2004/05, 10.3% of the NHS budget was spent on general practice but by 2011/12 this figure had dropped to 8.4%, according to analysis by the Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP) and the National Association for Patient Participation.

The RCGP said the slump is compromising the standard of care GPs can offer patients, leading to longer waiting times and increasing pressure on hospitals.

CBI URGES BUSINESS RATE RISE CAP

George Osborne should cap business rate rises at 2% next year and offer one-year rate holidays for firms moving into vacant sites to boost the recovery, the CBI says.

In its submission to the Chancellor ahead of his Autumn Statement, it argues the system is outmoded and acts as a barrier to much-needed investment.

Business rates normally rise in line with Retail Prices Index inflation as it stands in the previous September.

£11BN OLYMPICS BENEFIT TARGET MET

A four-year target of raising £11 billion worth of economic benefit from the London Olympics has been met in 12 months, the Government has announced.

The country has benefited from new foreign investment, additional sales and firms winning contracts since last summer's events, according to a report.

The total includes £130 million of contracts won by UK companies for next year's World Cup in Brazil, and the next Olympic Games in Rio in 2016.

CHILDREN IN NEED RAISES RECORD £31M

The BBC's Children in Need appeal has raised a record £31 million for disadvantaged children and young adults in the UK.

Sir Terry Wogan fired up the "totaliser" for the final time on the live entertainment show to reveal the record-breaking sum of £31,124,896.

The emotional host told viewers their kindness continues to give hope to the most vulnerable people in the nation.